A process for producing particle-reinforced composite materials through utilization of an in situ reaction to produce a uniform dispersion of a fine particulate reinforcement phase. The process includes forming a melt of a first material, and then introducing particles of a second material into the melt and subjecting the melt to high-intensity acoustic vibration. A chemical reaction initiates between the first and second materials to produce reaction products in the melt. The reaction products comprise a solid particulate phase, and the high-intensity acoustic vibration fragments and/or separates the reaction products into solid particles that are dispersed in the melt and are smaller than the particles of the second material. Also encompassed are particle-reinforced composite materials produced by such a process.
STATEMENT REGARDING FEDERALLY SPONSORED RESEARCH
This invention was made with government support under Contract No. DE-EE0001100 awarded by U.S. Department of Energy. The Government has certain rights in the invention.